Sacramento prosecutors have filed a special-circumstance allegation against the accused gunman in the fatal New Year's Eve bar shooting in Old Sacramento that has made him eligible for the death penalty.
The complaint against Carlito Montoya, 22, contains the special allegation of multiple murders in the shooting deaths of Daniel Ferrier, 36, a U.S. Army and National Guard veteran, and Gabriel Cordova, 35, the father of three.
Prosecutors also charged Montoya with two counts of attempted murder in the shootings of Cordova's wife, Christina, and Stephen Walton, 46, a security guard at the Sports Corner Cafe where the shooting took place less than an hour after a 9 p.m. fireworks show in Old Sac.
A second man who is charged in the case, Charles Wesley Fowler-Scholz, 34, is facing a three-strikes allegation that could land him in prison for 25-to-life if he is convicted. The complaint says that Fowler-Scholz has two prior robbery convictions arising out of the same 1996 case in Sacramento.
The DA's office has charged Fowler-Scholz with assault with a deadly weapon on Gabriel Cordova -- apparently a beer mug he used to hit the victim in the deadly New Year's Eve skirmish.
Fowler-Scholz's wife, Amber Olivia Scholz, 36, also is charged with assault with a deadly weapon on the slain man. She is the reputed instigator of the fight, having turned on Cordova after he accidentally spilled a drink on her.
Authorities believe Montoya first shot Ferrier when he tried to break up the fight that had erupted between the Scholz couple and Cordova, before turning his gun on his second victim.
The three defendants were scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon in front of Sacramento Superior Court Judge Lawrence G. Brown.
Montoya is being held in the downtown jail without bail.
Bail on the Scholz couple has been set at $1 million each. The warrant for their arrests says that both of them are at risk of fleeing to the Bahamas if they are released.
Photo caption: Carlito Montoya leaves the courtroom after being arraigned on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at the Sacramento Jail. Montoya faces a possible death penalty in the fatal New Year's Eve shooting in Old Sacramento. Photo by Hector Amezcua / email@example.com